PRAYER FOR THE WEEK
Jesus, teach me to be kind to angry kids and let adults know what's happening, so they can get help. Amen!
Jesus went to the temple in Jerusalem and couldn't believe what He saw. People were selling animals right in the temple and even making others pay to get in! Jesus made a whip and drove them all out of the temple, flipping over the tables of money and yelling, "Stop making my Father's house into a marketplace!"
Do you know any angry kids? Some kids really struggle with acting out because they're angry. They get in trouble in school or at home and have a hard time keeping friendships. Usually, that means something hurtful is happening in their lives. It could be bad stuff at home, low grades in school or another problem.
When someone you know is angry all the time, you may not know what to do. Should you just leave the person alone -- stop being friends and avoid the person as much as you can?
This week's Gospel (John 2:13-25) tells us the answer: No!
In the Gospel story, Jesus is angry. He doesn't show anger that often, but this time is a big deal. He sees people in the temple (like your church) charging others and even selling things people have to buy in order to get in, and He's furious. He flips over their tables, sets free the animals they were selling and yells at all of them.
Jesus is angry. Should everyone ignore Him? You're probably thinking, "Of course not! He's Jesus! People should pay attention to Him."
That's true for Jesus, because He had a lesson to teach: Church is about worshipping God, and everyone should be allowed to pray there.
It's also true for angry kids. If you see someone who always seems angry and acts out, pay attention! That kid obviously needs some help. Talk to the kid, but also talk to adults you trust about what's happening.
When someone is angry, don't avoid the person. Pay attention, show some kindness and get the person some help. Love goes a long way when someone is struggling!